Last Updated on January 13, 2023 by Meghan
The Section 8 program sanctions payment of rental housing support to private property-owners on behalf of low-income households in the United States. Getting into the Section 8 program as a single mom will help you get easy rental assistance and pay for housing. You can visit https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Section_8_(housing) to find out more.
Section 8 Qualifications, Requirements and Eligibility
The objective of this program is to award housing choice vouchers to individuals and families who meet their requirements. To be deemed eligible for the program, you will need to satisfy four essential criteria, which are income level, family status, citizenship, and eviction level.
Family Status: To meet HUD’s definition of a family, you will need to meet any or all of the following. You must be with or without children and have at least one individual who is over the age of 62. Also, you must have been displaced from your home by a federally recognized disaster or government action, etc.
Income Level: There are income limits set by the HUD which can be categorized into meager income (30% of the area’s median income level), insufficient income (50% of the area’s median income level) and low income (80% of the area’s median income level).
Citizenship: The HUD will only grant section 8 to individuals and families who are American citizens or have eligible immigrant status. You can consult https://www.hud.gov/sites/documents/DOC_35615.PDF to find out if you have a qualified immigrant status.
Eviction Level: The HUD will not grant you any Section 8 Housing Voucher if you have been expelled from a property within the last three years for drug-related criminal offenses or if you have been found guilty of producing methamphetamine in an aided housing project such as Section 8. You can visit https://www.thebalancesmb.com/section-8-housing-eligibility-requirements-2125017 to know more about the Section 8 housing eligibility.
Reasons for disqualification from Section 8
Anybody can be denied or disqualified quickly from Section 8 upon application or when already in the program. You can be excluded upon request if you have failed to meet the specific qualifications and when already in the program if you fail to keep their rules and regulations. Your Section 8 privileges can be taken away if you are found guilty of some of these reasons (disqualification).
1. If a family member is convicted of any drug-related crimes on the grounds of a Section 8 house or related areas.
2. If a family member’s income exceeds the income limit without informing the HUD or the Section 8 authority and it is later discovered.
3. If a family member refuses to sign assent forms.
4. If a family member has committed theft, fraud, or other criminal activities related to a public housing program.
You should note that you will not lose your Section 8 voucher when you change or get a new job, and you receive a higher salary than the previous one unless you do not report to the housing authority.
Difference between HUD and Section 8
The HUD provides various housing units that are owned by the federal government to low-income families for rent, such as duplexes, townhouses, and single-family houses. At the same time, Section 8 allows eligible applicants to rent residences and houses such as trailers, duplexes, apartments, condominiums, townhouses, and single-family homes owned by private individuals. Aside from what is said above, another significant difference between the HUD and Section 8 is that the income eligibility for HUD is below 80% of the average income in the housing authority’s jurisdiction. In comparison, that of Section 8 is 50% of the average salary in the housing authority’s jurisdiction.
Section 8 allocations for Single Mothers
There are various Federal and State shelter assistance programs such as Section 8 that can help single mothers rule out the difficulties faced when trying to find secure and affordable housing for their families. Although it is important to note that Section 8 vouchers given out for allocations cannot be made use of for the full payment of rent to landlords. Usually, the section 8 vouchers cover the rest of one’s rent after he or she has finished paying about 30% of their salary to the lease. Single mothers who want to partake in Section 8 should contact their local Public Housing Agency (PHA) to learn more and get assistance.
Marriage under Section 8
Although Section 8 is only for families, the meaning of a family by the program is not only reserved for married people or a group of relatives living together. So, a single person who lives or intends to live alone can qualify.
If you are planning to get married while under Section 8, you should first inform the housing authority of the marriage, as the inability to notify them can attract dire consequences. The housing authority then makes use of your partner’s monetary resources to recalculate your eligibility for Section 8. Your rent obligation may increase, decrease, or be nullified depending on how much income between you and your spouse.